André de Ruyter Apologises for Loadshedding, Blames Lack of Maintenance in Apartheid

André de Ruyter Apologises for Loadshedding, Blames Lack of Maintenance in Apartheid

- Eskom CEO André de Ruyter has asked South Africans to bear with the power utility as they attempt to execute a maintenance plan and solve the issues causing loadshedding

- De Ruyter stated that the problems stem more than 40 years ago due to a lack of maintenance during the apartheid regime, which Eskom is now trying to catch up with

- De Ruyter apologised to the people of SA for the power cuts and while loadshedding has plagued the country since the beginning of the week, it may not end on Friday as expected

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Eskom CEO André de Ruyter released a public 'apology' for the issues faced by South Africans in terms of loadshedding. Stage 2 loadshedding was implemented earlier this week and is expected to conclude on Friday, 4 May.

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Reports have revealed that the power utility made the situation for many Saffas worse as unscheduled power cuts occurred in many parts of the country. There have also been cases of power not returning at the end of the scheduled time.

De Ruyter stated that while loadshedding has been going on for over 15 years, there are a number of issues that have caused the regular power cuts. He explained that one of the reasons is a lack of maintenance dating back to the apartheid regime.

André de Ruyter apologises for loadshedding blames lack of maintenance in Apartheid
André de Ruyter has apologised for loadshedding in SA and has made mention of the lack of maintenance during Apartheid. Image: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg
Source: Getty Images

Power cuts reportedly expected

According to TimesLIVE, De Ruyter stated that the power cuts were not unexpected. De Ruyter said that Eskom is working hard to catch up on maintenance that had been deferred over the past few years.

De Ruyter said that although he only took the role over in January 2020, he has communicated that while the reliability recovery programme is going on there would be an increased risk of loadshedding due to the maintenance.

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More capacity needed

EWN reported that De Ruyter stated that more capacity is needed on the grid. He quoted President Cyril Ramaphosa's State of the Nation Address in February where the president said an estimated 4 000 to 6 000 megawatts of additional generation capacity needed to be added to the grid.

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Racism allegations against De Ruyter

Briefly News reported that De Ruyter was found not guilty of the claims of racism levelled against him. The report from Advocate Ishmael Semenya, who was commissioned to investigate the charges, has been received by Eskom's Board.

The allegations included the abuse of power, racial discrimination, poor governance, irregular recruitment, irregular staff appointments as well as unlawful procurement, according to a report by SABC News.

After Eskom's former head of procurement, Solly Tshitangano, wrote to President Cyril Ramaphosa and the board's chairperson Malegapuru Makgoba, saying that De Ruyter favoured white staff, an independent investigation was launched.

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